Today is Mother’s Day in North America (I think it was celebrated last week in Europe). My kids wanted to make something special for their mum. You see it in the picture above. It was pretty nice.
We have two hives in the back yard. The weather has improved, bees have been gathering nectar and pollen, and they built a lot of burr comb because our hives have some space between the top bars and the lid (there isn’t yet a proper inner cover in place). We had saved burr comb each time we’d worked the hives. The bits and pieces of wax had nearly filled a 4-litre (one-gallon) plastic bucket.
My daughter chopped it up and put it into the microwave where it reduced to about one-tenth its volume. The hot mixture was pulled out every minute so the kids could stir it. The goal was to make a hot messy slurry of melted wax and honey. All of this took about five minutes.
Once melted, they dumped it, while it was hot, into a tall glass container. Wax floated to the top. The wax was poured, as a liquid, into a little bunny candle mold. The rest of the slurry was filtered through a sieve to remove bees’ knees. Next, the kids sieved the mixture into another glass container. That container, which by now was mostly honey, was plunged into ice-cold water so that the hot honey would quickly chill, preventing darkening and burning. They waited a day, skimmed debris from the the surface of the honey, and poured the remainder into the fresh clean jar you see in the pictures. And, voilà, Happy Mothers Day!